A red-tailed hawk named Rudy has been named the official mascot of Gateway Technical College and she will make her home at the Racine Zoo.

The hawk had a broken wing and had been with a wildlife rehabilitation specialist. Staff at the zoo are helping to train Rudy. Once she is healthy, she will become an ambassador for the zoo and the college. Rudy’s home will be in the peasantry, which is just north of the bear viewing area. She’ll be ready for visitors in early May.

Rudy is an important animal ambassador because she allows guests to get close to, observe, and learn about a species from right here in Wisconsin,” said Jay Christie, zoo president and chief executive officer. “Thank you to Gateway for making this a learning opportunity for the entire community.”

 The technical college sponsored the hawk and exhibit, which will be outfitted with a live web camera.

We believe in environmental stewardship, education and, of course, Rudy the red hawk,” said Stephanie Sklba, Gateway vice president, community and government relations. “The real-life Rudy helps us to embrace all of these. She will be a great ambassador for the college and education. We are happy to partner with the zoo on this effort.”

Denise Lockwood has an extensive background in traditional and non-traditional media. She has written for Patch.com, the Milwaukee Business Journal, Milwaukee Magazine and the Kenosha News.